Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Parking Strip: 4/26/15

I spent the entire day working down in the parking strip this last Saturday.  All.  Day.  Like, seven hours worth.

When I first took all the sod out, I hauled buckets of rock from my sister's house to line the edges.  Their beds were full of them, so they were digging and dumping.  I needed a barrier to keep the soil off the sidewalk, so I figured free was a pretty good price.  Over the years, all those rocks had become completely buried.  So I dug them all out, and put them all back in.  All. Day. Long.

The other major goings on down there, was the fact that it's a total weed patch and needed to be dealt with.  I don't get it.  Well, I do get it, everyone else's weed seeds come floating over to my strip.  Plus, the rocks were probably covered in seeds originally, too.  The rest of the yard, back and front, hardly ever gets weeds anymore, but that dang parking strip is a nightmare.  Plus, I have Feverfew and Alyssum that reseeds down there like wildfire, so I was pulling all of that.  The Alyssum I save for my pots, but the Feverfew goes in the compost.  And this year, I had nine hundred zillion cosmos coming, too.  I only had two plants down there last summer, but they must have decided to raise their offspring in the same place, 'cause the seedlings were out of control.  I also dug and saved a ton those.

ANYWAY, I figured I'd better document my work, since it'll look like I never touched it in a month.
 So I headed out the next morning with my camera, barely able to walk.

I also pulled mats of Feverfew babies from the strip outside the fence.
That whole area is a weed patch, too.

This is the 'Wojo's Jem', Vinca I put down at sidewalk level.

Remember when I dug out all that Snow In Summer a few weeks ago?
Yeah, it's back with a vengeance.
Anybody in town need a start?

One of the new-this-spring babies is blooming.
This is Silene dioica, 'Clifford Moor', or as I refer to it, Campion.

Okay, back to the other side.

I guess I'll just start on the north end and work my way south.
I believe the plant closest to the edge is a Linaria.
The birdies brought it last year.

The Rhubarb took off after its manure feeding.
I have two of them, the smaller one I just put in last year is called 'Victoria'.  
The bigger is called 'Glaskins Perpetual' and I believe this is its third year.

I put in this plant that my aunt shared a piece of last year, and now I can't remember the name.

Here are some shots around the other side of the tree.

I love this variegated Iris.

I planted this Allium in the fall.

The Rock Rose is just starting to bloom.

The Scabiosa overwintered again.

Moving along, some full shots of the other side.

That photo just reminded me of the other plant I'm fighting to get rid of CONSTANTLY.
I must have blocked it out.
That purple Aster that showed up last year.
TERRIBLE.  The runners are all over the place.
It'll take me years to get rid of it.
I filled two giant buckets with it and that was my third time pulling it this year.

The weeds that come up in that brick path make me nuts.
We should have lined it with landscape fabric first.

You can see my first attempt at Gladiolas is a success so far.
They're up and at 'em.

And the Peony that I transplanted fairly recently, at the exact wrong time, might actually bloom.

Another angle.
This is a pretty good shot of almost everything on this side.
Crocosmia, Feverfew, Rosemary, the pink flower in the back corner that I'm drawing a blank on, Delphinium, Phlox, another Crocosmia, Foxglove, Lavender, Geum, Phygelius, Iris, Helianthemum, Peony, Scabiosa, Sedum, Penstemon, Echinops, and Rudbeckia.

From the street.
A couple volunteer Spiderwort and a grass that I love, but don't remember what it is.
It's one of the first plants I put in down here.
There's also a piece of a Yarrow that a neighbor gave me this spring.

The 'Moonraker' Phygelius is loaded with buds.

Here you can see Crocosmia (the orange one that I grew up calling Montbretia), Delphinium, Phlox, Geum, Lavender in the bottom corner, and Rosemary in the background.

The Geum is 'Double Bloody Mary.'
I was happy it came back, 'cause it didn't really do much last year when I put it in.

Another Scabiosa.

And a pulled back view of the far end.

Here we have a couple Feverfew volunteers that overwintered, a perennial Bachelor Button, Echinacea, another Allium, the low limey green is my Pineapple Sage that made it through winter, and there's several different Liriope that I put in last fall.

This is between the Rosemary and the Phygelius on the street side.
Do you think I can remember what the heck it's called right now?
Drawing a blank.
It'll probably come to me once I hit publish.

I have to laugh when I look at these pictures.
When we originally took out all the sod down there, my plan was to put in some ornamental grasses and bark dust.  Maybe a few big rocks.
The end.
Low maintenance, set it and forget it.
Clearly I should have known my plant hoarding ways would get the better of me.
Bare dirt and I don't really gel.
And to make matters worse, last summer I took out the small section on the other side of the driveway.
I lined it with extra rock on Saturday, so now it's all matchy matchy.

The plants are stuff I stuck in at the end of summer.
All freebies or divisions from the yard.

There's Liriope, a pink Candytuft, Rudbeckia, Salvia nemorosa 'Crystal Blue', Sedum 'Autumn Joy', and, of course, volunteer Feverfew.
The dirt is crap, even after adding good stuff three times since last summer, but I have to remember, the other side was crap the first couple of years, too.
You can only pile it on so high without some sort of a retaining edge.
So, for now, not all that impressive, but we'll see how it does.
Better than the weed/moss patch that was masquerading as lawn.
My neighbor told me the rocks look like potatoes.
Yep, they do.  But they were free potatoes!

So there ya go, the longest post of the year so far.
After a rainy week, we're supposed to get up in the 70's for a few days, starting tomorrow.
Mom Club Mimosa Friday, here I come.
Woo hoo!

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